In case you're reading this and you aren't a Trail Monster, all that gibberish in the title means "I've Been Married For Fourteen Years and My Wife Still Doesn't Have A Fat Ass" :-) Ha. Just another excuse for a trail run with friends! Ian laid out a great course on some of the trails out of the Falmouth Community Park, and spent most nights during the week snowshoeing the course to pack it down after Tuesday's snowstorm. Thanks, Ian, for coming up with a fun event! And happy happy anniversary you two!
The morning didn't get off to a very auspicious start, as I left the house with Ryan holding back a screaming Samantha, who was crying for me not to go. Talk about mommy guilt! AIE! I zoomed into the parking lot with just a few minutes to spare, but still had to get on my shoes, get my pack organized, etc. I was a bit frazzled when the call was made to "go," and just ended up at the back of the line. I settled in eventually with Val and Mindy, with Amy behind us, and we wound our way along the 5-mile loop. The trail meandered on the edge of fields, into the woods, along a few streams, up and down a number of little bumps along the way, looping back on itself a few times. It took a fair amount of concentration to stay upright and on track on the singletrack, as the snow was packed, but not completely flat and the conditions varied from hard-pack to ice to sugary snow to bare ground. As the day went on, slush and mud were added to the mix.
It was fun to catch up with Val and Mindy as we ran along, but when we got back to the gazebo at the end of the first loop with 5+ miles done, I realized that I needed to pick up the pace if I was going to even get in 15 miles in the timeframe I had laid out with Ryan. I sent him a text asking him to push off his arrival by 30 minutes, but still had to get moving. I headed out ahead of the rest of the crew, but it didn't matter much. We were far enough behind most of the group that I couldn't catch anyone, and ran lap #2 by myself. Still, I enjoyed the scenery and pushing the pace a bit, although I wasn't by any means moving really quickly. Back at the gazebo at 10.18 miles, I headed out on lap #3 with Sean, and we spent the first mile or so chatting as we ran along. But he waved me ahead soon thereafter, saying he was just taking the pace down a bit. I understood and once again, I was on my own. I was still enjoying myself, but the variable conditions and the slipping and sliding were making my hip flexors a bit grouchy, and I knew I'd probably end up cutting the planned for 20 miles a bit short. I ran into Shauna and Jim walking Schafer back near the start and stopped to chat with them for a while - haven't seen them in a while, so it was fun to catch up a bit! - and got back to the start/finish in a little over 3 hours. Not exactly blazing fast! I called Ryan to find out his status. I still had 20 minutes, so I headed back out and just ran the beginning and ending field loop to round out my mileage to an even 17. I had been out there for a fair amount of time by the time I got back - 3:24 with all stops included - so the time on the feet was good, and honestly, I wasn't all that enthused to go out for the final 3 miles, so I just decided to call it good there. Maybe I should have pushed, but oh well . Sam and I didn't hang around long - it was windy and I was chilled - so we let Ryan take off for his run and the two of us headed off to find some lunch!
It was fun to run someplace new, and while I didn't get the chance to run with too many people, it was nice to catch up here and there with everyone, even if it was just in passing! :-) Thanks Ian and Emma!